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Poster: William Tell Date: Jun 25, 2009 7:07pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

Too good!

I have been to a few those helping out various folks (yes, it's always a "friend"...really! I am DEAD serious!), and I picked up on that straight away--the blame game.

I was amazed by the failure rate. It is basically 90% (ie, falling off the wagon).

The studies suggest that whatever you do, it's largely the same (damn, sounds like my back problems: surgery = chiro = acupuncture = massage = drugs = phy therapy = witch doctors = SAME outcome probabilities!?! WTF?!). Whether it be going to church, meditating, taking "blocking drugs", seeing a head doc, etc., etc., etc. Not very encouraging is it?

Whenever this failure rate would come up, everyone would look shocked and surprised, and say it was different with them, and they didn't believe in those DAMN statistics, blah, blah, blah...later it would turn out that not a SINGLE one of them was in the program for the first time!? Everyone of them was on at least their third time around, some more!? Hmmm, can we spell self delusional?

Now, don't get me wrong--these programs can work, and I have every sympathy for all the folks making a go of it however they are trying.

But, yeah, the whole notion of giving yourself up, and telling yourself that blame lies externally, to me just sorta supports this whole notion that when you fail, it's not your fault. Ya know?

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Poster: fenario80 Date: Jun 26, 2009 7:08am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

This is the oddest thread, so I can't tell if I'm going off-topic or not, but I went through detox/rehab/halfway at the age of 23 in the summer of 1986, spending a total of four months and one week in various facilities, courtesy of the federal government, the county of Los Angeles, and some truly wonderful people who supported a private halfway house in Hollywood, and almost 23 years later I am here to tell you that those awful statistics can be a powerful motivating factor. Like you, I was appalled to learn that most people I met along that journey were "in program" for their second, third, fourth, etc, time, and every time I heard that I said to myself: "not me - there is no fucking way I'm going through this again." Every time they said "over 90% recidivism," I said to myself: "not me."

In three months at a halfway house with a constant population of 24, we kicked out about half a dozen people for various reasons, mostly for using. One of those people was dead within two weeks; another OD'ed and suffered permanent brain damage from the coma that followed. I just kept saying to myself: "not me." The awkward punchline to this story is that almost 23 years later, myself and three other guys, who all finished that program within a couple of weeks of each other, are still standing. I consider myself very lucky that I was still young, full of potential, and there were people who were truly motivated to help me. That gets harder and harder the more broken down you get from your addictions. I also consider myself lucky - and the four of us agree on this - that we saw so much horror in the halfway house: it made us all say to ourselves "not me" a lot.

Again, I consider myself extremely lucky. And even though that summer of 1986 was my one and only formal attempt to "get clean," I had been trying to quit drinking since I was 16 - so the final point I'm trying to make is that everybody is different, and it's much harder for some people than for others, but it's a lot like quitting smoking, in that you should never give up because you never know which attempt is going to be the successful one. There are a lot more people who went through the "revolving door" for years before finally getting there than there are people like me who "get it" the first time. These programs only offer a set of tools that can help: you still have to use the tools, and I personally believe it probably helps to be really stubborn and say "not me" a lot.

To me, that whole notion of "disease," and it being "not your fault" are not about denial but are just tools to break the ugly cycle of guilt/remorse that usually leads to more of the very same offending behavior, so you have to say: "it may not really be my fault that I got here, but it is 100% my responsibility to get myself out of here."

Just to bring this back to Dead-related, I was in Redgate County hospital in Long Beach, CA when the news broke about Jerry's coma. As the weeks went on I kept thinking, "wouldn't that be something if me & the fat man got clean at the same time?" Ah well, at least by all accounts he did last a couple of years that first time ...

Peace out.


This post was modified by fenario80 on 2009-06-26 14:08:06

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Poster: William Tell Date: Jun 26, 2009 6:42am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

Good job my friend...good story. I'll never recover from what has happened with my family in relation to these issues, and I wish it was a lot easier than it is, but in the end as you make clear, it comes down to personal responsibility.

As a parent and a brother, it's a place you do not ever want to be...

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Poster: fenario80 Date: Jun 26, 2009 7:00am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

Well I never would have been there myself if it hadn't been for all that early family education ...

And I neglected to underline my last point about the statistics: with 4 of us still standing out of a total 8 or 9 in that "class of November '86" we beat the shit out of those statistics ...

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Poster: pigpen_81 Date: Jun 26, 2009 1:30am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

Correct you are, Tell. One needs to take responsibility for ones own actions before they can stop the aberrant behavior. After all, if it was not their fault then there is nothing they can do to change it. They are just a victim.

I suggest he gets honest with his post 72 problem. He self admittedly is powerless over certain 90's shows and I speculate he's another that's fallen prey to the 77 ~just out the studio from Terrapin~ syndrome. Perhaps this is a cry for help ?

Asking for help is a good thing, it shows acknowledgment that there is a problem and that he can't solve it on his own.

To simplify : I can't,... They can,.. I'll let them.

So,.. I suggest a trip back in time. Perhaps a little inventory (or taking stock) of the early years.

Good place to start is the DS contained in this show ---> http://www.archive.org/details/gd1969-06-27.sbd.finney.10344.shnf

Then a little housecleaning is in order,.. remove all those items that are post 72 so you won't be tempted.

Then to stay right minded listen to what Tell sent you everyday even if just for an hour. It will keep you grounded and you'll be less likely to relapse.

Keep coming Mando...
It works if you work it! <--- --- I've always hated that saying but felt it was appropriate in this case.

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Poster: rastamon Date: Jun 26, 2009 5:27am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

I've heard from certain unreliable sources that a person I'll only give the initials of- CH(with respect for his privacy)actually enjoys a 1990 show.
But seriously, I was workin in Danville, Ca yesterday painting at a zillionaires house. There were several folks from Mexico working at landscaping, I threw http://www.archive.org/details/gd78-06-25.sbd.cotsman.7048.sbefail.shnf into my trusty boombox, halfway thru Big River, Juan (their forman)came up to me and asked me to turn it....UP- wow! and asked me who was playing the guitar so well, I told him, with a spanish florish(rollin the r's), "Why thats Jerry Garcia! the greatest mexican american guitar player" (so i fibbed a little)
He said "es wayno, very good!" I gave him my personal copy before they left(it's on my HD & worth the sacrifice)
My contribution to the bro's from down south- I'm sooo proud-lol.

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Poster: pokeyloki Date: Jun 26, 2009 5:52pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

That reminds me of Silver Bowl with Santana 2nd bill, all the Mexican cowboys with thier pickp trucks with brahmin bulls painted on the side,'n boots 'n white hats were mixing it up with the heads out in the parking lot. I'm trying to think, was that the show that had a big dust storm blowing through that made everyone put scarfs over thier faces like Lawrence of Arabia?

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Poster: William Tell Date: Jun 26, 2009 6:45am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

Hey, that is a great story!

My guess is that 68 wouldn't have worked out nearly as well...unless...unless you played...[get it yet?]:

Spanish Jam!

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Poster: William Tell Date: Jun 26, 2009 6:48am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

Whoa, this thread is really rolling along...where the heck is MJ? Off in the bathroom with 91 on the ipod no doubt!

Intervention time!

What I noticed is that the whole "it's not your fault, it's the illness" (I won't go into that debate, I see both sides to the issue, but in the end it's a red herring), and with the low success rate, folks were more or less set up for failure if you follow.

What I mean is, perhaps they should start out with fire and brimstone, and instead of embracing the failure rate, Attack it with vigor--"if you fail were are going to tear you apart!" etc., etc.

I dunno if it would work but the touchy feely realism doesn't seem to be...

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Poster: Mandojammer Date: Jun 26, 2009 7:35am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

I AM NOT!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm combing my hair.

Actually, I'm doing a binge and purge. Popped in Punk Jazz (Jaco Pastorius Anthology) and am sitting here shaking my head in amazement. That dude's soundboard was wired way different from yours or mine.

Off to the doc for the 4 week follow-up. Should get a clean bill to step up the rehab. been walking without the brace for a week now (walking stick assisted, can't bring myself to say "cane" so I'm using and hiking staff made of mountain ash I found on Hurricane Ridge in Washington's Olympic Mountains National Park). Also been on the stationary bike three times a week for 30 minutes each.

No swelling or pain that can't be handled with two or three fingers of 1984 Caol Ila single malt.

Leaving for Tennessee tomorrow morning to visit family in a few hours - I'll be checking in for more interventional abuse.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Jun 26, 2009 12:26pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 12 Stepper Confession (Dead related)

Oh, yeah...recovery was a long process for me after the first major surgery (disregard negative aspects for your "positive" outlook maintenance).

Well, crap, I'll just leave out all that stuff now that I think of it...

But, I will never forget the surgeon seeing me after three months. I had become very adept at evaluating the swelling. With your leg straight on the floor, you can just about lock your knee, and if there is any swelling, you get a tightness along with a little pouch that forms to the side, usu lateral, of the knee cap. I asked him about why I was still having swelling with activity and he said "I don't see any..." so I sit on the table and show him my knee and push the pouch of fluid from one side of the knee to the other...

"That's not clinically significant" says he...

"Oh" said me.